[nfbmi-talk] check out our sister agency here rsa!!!

joe harcz Comcast joeharcz at comcast.net
Tue Apr 20 17:53:05 UTC 2010

Check out what the Michigan Rehabilitation Council was informed about the RSA monitoring. Note that is the similar council to Michigan Rehab Services as the MCB Board is supposed to be to the Michigan Commission.

Also note that MRS did have the monitoring report in September and they have it now as does MCB.


Mrc minutes in html from sept 2009

This is the html version of the file



Google automatically generates html versions of documents as we crawl the web.




Business Meeting Minutes


MRC Office


Lansing, Michigan


Friday, September 18, 2009


Voting Members Present in Person:  Norma Bauer, Jeanette Brown, Cecily Cagle.


Voting Members Present by Phone: Carol Bergquist, Anthony Carmichael, Eleanor Chang, Beth Childress, Adolph Cwik, Jacqueline Day, Eddie Mae Dixon, Susan

Fitzmaurice, Shon Halacka, Deb Hilvers, Cynthia Kidder, Joanne Lamar, Nan Melke, Al Tenbrink, Jacqueline Thomas, Rick Weir, Luke Zelley.


Members Excused:  Alicia Paterni, Lynn Zuellig.


Guests Present In Person:  Valarie Barnum-Yarger (Michigan Statewide Independent Living Council).


Guests Present by Phone:  Deborah Bradley (Department of Energy, Labor and Economic Growth – Michigan Rehabilitation Services DELEG-MRS), James Bunton (DELEG-MRS),

Leamon Jones (Michigan Commission for the Blind), Ruth O’Connor (DELEG-MRS), Garrett Pazur (DELEG-MRS), Jaye Shamsiddeen (DELEG-MRS). Felix Sirls (Urban

Health Care Issues).


Staff Present: Marlene Malloy, Shori Teeple.


Call to Order


The meeting was called to order by Chairperson C. Cagle. Roll call determined that a quorum was present.


Welcome & Introductions


C. Cagle welcomed the Council members and guests.  Introductions were made.




The draft agenda was reviewed by the membership.  Requests for additions under Executive Committee report included:  1) add FY 10 MRC Meetings Calendar

and 2) add ‘Comments about MRC Appointments’.


A motion was passed to approve the amended draft agenda as presented.




The membership reviewed the following draft minutes:  February 20th, 2009 Business Meeting and July 29th, 2009 ‘Special Meeting of the MRC’.  A request

was made for a correction to the June ‘Special Meeting of the MRC’ minutes – Jacqui Day was excused.


A motion was passed to approve the February 20th and July 29th, 2009 minutes as presented.


Executive Committee Report


Executive Committee Workplan goals and minutes were discussed.


A motion was passed to approve the Executive Committee minutes and workplan goals.


The draft proposed MRC Meetings Calendar for the remainder of FY 09 and all of FY 10 was reviewed.  Two in-person meetings and two teleconferences have

been planned.  An October in-service session will likely occur at the Radisson Hotel in Lansing, since meeting rooms at MRS were not available.  Members

will have lunch with Central Office Staff, brief presentations of MRS programming (driven by 2 MRC committees) will be provided by MRS Staff, and committees

will meet for a working dinner from 6-9PM.  The first business meeting of FY 2010 will take place from 9:00 – 3:30PM on Friday October 9th at the Radisson.


A motion was passed to approve the draft FY 2010 MRC Meeting Schedule (Oct. 09 – Sept. 10).


Comments about Appointments – C. Cagle


MRC met with DELEG who advised that in the Governor's Executive Order, the Director of Education was appointed to MRC as a voting member.  He has the authority

to designate who he wishes to attend MRC meetings as a voting member representing the Director of Education.  MRC bylaws do not read this way and will

need to be changed to fulfill this mandated requirement.  This change has been made in the State Plan 2010 to RSA to assure this issue will be resolved.

 Once the MRC bylaws are revised, they will be brought to the membership for future approval.


Financial Statements


The financial statements for February 09 through July 09 were reviewed.  The final FY 09 Redress is in progress.  A draft redress will go to Jim Bunton

at the beginning of next week.


A motion was passed to accept and place on file the financial statements for February 09 through July 09.


MRS Workgroup Updates


MRS American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) Manager Hiring Team - A. Tenbrink – It was an empowering experience to be part of the process.  The group

was able to come to consensus with a decision.  J. Shamsiddeen added that MRS appreciated Al’s participation.  The person hired for the position was Bill

Lovell, who has many years of experience and MRS is very pleased to have him.


Ambassador Team – S. Teeple – The group is moving forward and excited about the upcoming rollout of the portal, which will be a tool for MRS counselors

and staff to use to better communicate with each other around the state.


Long Term Plan Goal 5 – J. Brown – The group focuses on core counseling skills, and is divided into subcommittees.  Self-Assessments will soon be available

in all offices.


Marketing – M. Malloy – The committee is working on designs for the MRS FY 09 Annual Report in calendar format, with plans for December distribution as

a ‘gift’ to staff and partners.  Also working on the Employer Recognition Event which will take place on October 14th at the Capitol:  Promoting Abilities

– Employer Champion Awards and honor employers from around the state.  MRC is partnering with MRS and MCB for the event with invitations sent to the Governor

and legislators.  Acrylic awards will be etched by students at MCTI; students will be given recognition for their contributions. Council members are invited

to attend the event.


MAT (MRS Advisory Team) – C. Cagle – From the Cash Match workgroup, 68% of cash matches are with Intermediate School Districts or Community Mental Health

agencies, so data will be collected there first.  They are continuing to seek input from MRC so will update as needed.  Discussion also took place about

piloting the Wisconsin Team Approach with one rural and one urban site.


Policy Cadre – G. Pazur – An operational plan for the year is in place to reestablish the Policy Cadre meetings.  Question: will the Policy Cadre be informed

by feedback from counselors at recent counselor forums?  Yes, it will be an agenda item.


Quality Improvement Team (QIT) – M. Malloy – QIT provides technical assistance to Centers for Independent Living (CILs) in the state.  A sub work group

has met to create an effective and transparent system with plans and documentation in place to monitor CILs through a system of flags and triggers.


MI Works Association Disability Sub-Work Group – A. Paterni unavailable for update.


MRC Committees


Service Delivery Effectiveness (SDE) – J. Brown (Committee Chair) – The committee has had one in-person meeting and two teleconference meetings.  Four goals

have been developed from the MRC Strategic Plan.  Goal 1 - Collaborate with MRS regarding service system/policies – A. Paterni and J. Brown serve on the

Policy Cadre and look forward to getting back to Policy Cadre meetings.  Goal 2 - Obtaining Customer Input – presently looking at methods used by other

states to obtain customer input.  Goal 3 - Transition Services to Youth – transition data has been requested from MRS and will be reviewed at the in-person

October SDE meeting.  Transition data specifics were read aloud.  Committee also wants to know what other types of transition data they can request.  Goal

4 - Partner with Independent Living (IL) system in Michigan – plans have been discussed to invite IL representatives to speak to the committee and open

it up to the membership. Representatives from the Michigan Statewide Independent Living Council (MiSILC), Disability Network/Michigan (DN/M), and MRS to

also speak about core IL services and other services available at CILs.  A password protected SDE page on the MRC website now provides resources for committee

members (documents, websites, etc.).


Information and Evaluation (I & E) – C. Bergquist (Committee Chair) – The brand new committee has had one in-person meeting and one teleconference meeting.

 Four goals have been developed from the MRC Strategic Plan.  Goal 1 – Obtaining data about customer service.  Goal 2 – Customer Satisfaction Survey (CSS)

– Working with the SDE Committee on what to do about customer satisfaction and other ways to obtain feedback in addition to looking at the data we currently

have.  Goal 3 – Comprehensive Statewide Needs Assessment (CSNA) – This is a huge task that we need to start as early as possible to work with MRS. Goal

4 – Informed Choice – looking at what MRS and customers say about informed choice.


Public Policy Agenda (PPA) – N. Melke (Committee Chair) – This committee was formerly known as the Partners and Legislature committee.  Three goals:  Goal

1 – Partnerships.  Goal 2 – Legislature.  Goal 3 – Emerging Issues – crafting strong advocacy statements and communicating them to the legislature and

other policymakers.  In October, the committee will reconvene a subcommittee to begin planning the next Advocacy Day event at the Capitol.


Committees will finalize their workplans and present them to the membership in the months ahead for final approval.


A motion was passed to approve all proposed committee minutes and workplan goals.


Report of the Executive Director: Marlene Malloy


With the state budget not yet determined, MRS doesn’t know how much funding it will lose.  The budget for the October 09 Customers of MRS Leadership Program

has been approved.  Depending on MRS budget cuts that may occur, the MRC is moving ahead with the program with the knowledge that the program may be cancelled

for this year if MRS is unable to send staff to the conference.


This Friday, Executive Committee members will be meeting in Detroit with Jaye Shamsiddeen, Lou Adams and Detroit staff to discuss the outcomes, recommendations,

and next steps with regard to the Detroit Employment Focus Group Report.  Members will receive the report in the near future.


Report of the Department of Energy, Labor & Economic Growth - Michigan Rehabilitation Services, (DELEG-MRS) State Director : Jaye Shamsiddeen


RSA Monitoring Report – MRS received the report yesterday.  MRC, MiSILC, and Michigan Protection and Advocacy have not yet received the report.  The MRS

Executive Team spent the afternoon going through the report, which was conservative with praise, but critical with concerns.  Ten findings required corrective

action – IPE, MRC appointments conflict, CSNA, residency requirements, IL appointment issue and five budget issues.  MRS has until October 18th to respond

to the draft and send in comments/rebuttal; the bureau will be reviewing the report and including MRC in this process.  While RSA indicates they reserve

the right to sanction MRS financially, if MRS indicates good faith effort, RSA will take this into consideration.  This is the most negative report from

RSA that MRS has ever received.  RSA will consider the rebuttal response once submitted, finalize report, and give MRS steps for a corrective action plan.

 There could be financial sanctions or MRS could be put on notice as an ‘at-risk’ bureau.  MRS did not see positives in the report, which RSA had for them

during the monitoring visit in April.


Fiscal Year End Management – MRS is doing its best to manage the JET (Jobs, Education and Training) Program, which has been cut in half, while also implementing

the recovery plan, and adjusting workloads due to furlough days.  Though the long term plan is moving forward, staff are beginning to show signs of stress

and wear and tear, but still trying to be positive about the work to be done.


American Recovery and Reinvestment Act,(ARRA) Projects – Bill Lovell is working with Andrea Tolle to move this forward.  MRS is getting mixed messages and

contradictions about ARRA money.  Districts have had to propose innovative projects to use ARRA money, including MCTI infrastructure improvements and programs

to allow students to learn new skills.  MCTI hopefully will be getting funds through the Department Recovery Funds that are earmarked for energy efficiency.

 MCTI-East will also be receiving ARRA funding.


State Plan FY 2010 – hoping it will be approved with changes indicated for MRC appointments conflict.


Long Term Plan (LTP) – While the Executive Team had been meeting monthly to review progress, with other priorities, they are still tracking how MRS is progressing

with the LTP.


Michigan Career and Technical Institute (MCTI) – East – continues to be a priority to expand MCTI opportunities to the Detroit area.  There have been challenges,

but they are working through them to move the project forward.  MRS has been working with Wings of Faith to train customers in customer service, soft skills,

etc.  Staff has been working to secure a facility dedicated to MCTI-East with at least one occupational skill development program initiated.  The program

will hopefully be launched in December 09.


Jobs, Education and Training (JET) Program – The budget has been cut by 43% and referrals for consultations have been shut down.  MRS will send a position

paper to the Department of Human Services to continue with the JET initiative, but MRS and the Bureau of Workforce Development need a minimum amount of

funds to keep the program going.  They will seek out alternative strategies (i.e. laying staff off).  To transition 1800-1900 cases to Title I funding,

those cases would have to be closed and administratively reopened.  This could throw MRS into an Order of Selection.  MRS is working hard to resolve the



Independent Living (IL) Network – MRS continues to work on IL partnerships.  There is a need to have IL leaders meet with MRS and MRC to set forth a positive

constructive tone to improve relationships with MiSILC and their Partners.


Community Connections – Benton Harbor Center for Independent Living (CIL) – funding has been removed and the CIL has been closed.  Too many long term issues

regarding follow through on grant requirements were not resolved, even though opportunities were extended to gain compliance.  As administrator of funds,

MRS decided to remove funding.  The neighboring CIL, Disability Network - Southwest Michigan), will assume continuation of services to customers.


Budget Brochure – under authority to inform and educate how MRS and MCB receive funding from the state, a brochure has been created and will be sent to

the MRC and the Legislature.  This brochure was in the business meeting packet.


State Plan FY 09 - Updates on 6 Recommendations from MRC :


1) Diversity in Hiring – Margie Hadsell is working with the recruitment team, which includes the MRC, to improve literature and activities related to recruitment.

While currently focusing on colleges and recruitment teams, MRS hopes to address high school students in the future.


2) Feedback from Counseling Staff – LTP Goal 5 – Counselor forums have provided feedback, with an emphasis on expanding the workgroup to include more counselors.

 Suggestions have been made to convene a Rehabilitation Assistant forum to gain feedback.


3) Revitalization of Consumer Cadre – Plans to expand the cadre include Customer Rights Representatives, 2 Innovation Unit Consultants, 1 Policy Consultant,

1 IL Representative, 1 Staff Development Consultant, and 1 Business Network Consultant.


4) Standards for Cash Match Agreement Workgroups – The workgroup focusing on partners that MRS currently works with the most.


5) ADA Site Reviews – Two reports have been conducted (Ann Arbor and Marquette) and MRS is awaiting findings from the Macomb Review.  Whether or not to

go statewide next year will depend on budget, funding, and other factors.  Final findings to be shared with the MRC once all results have been compiled.


6) Customers of MRS Leadership Program – An evaluation was completed by Tom Jones with support to encourage funding for the October 09 program.


Other Topics


Paperless Hiring – applications are now only being received electronically.  While accessibility concerns have been raised, those who have accommodation

needs will be referred to the One Stop System.


3 Strengths in RSA Monitoring Report – A #1 major strength of MRS noted in the report was the positive working relationship with and effectiveness of the

Michigan Rehabilitation Council.




N. Bauer – Is there any advocacy on the large paperwork requirements from the bureaucracy?     J. Shamsiddeen - We are doing the best we can with what we



V. Barnum-Yarger – With regard to Community Connections and actions taken to remove funding, you have the full backing of the IL network and MiSILC.


C. Bergquist – The MRC appreciates the job MRS is doing.  The positive relationship with MRS goes both ways.


J. Bunton – To add, MRS staff really appreciates the leadership from Jaye.  With a lot going on, she keeps staff focused on the mission and goals.  Her

guidance helps staff move forward.  MCTI-East – The Customer Service Program that we are working with through the guidance of the Detroit Renaissance Program

and Wings of Faith is going to be a good pilot program and model for us to use in upcoming programs.  We are awaiting ADA reports from Macomb to relay

final reports from pilot ADA review assessments for Ann Arbor, Marquette, and Macomb.


J. Shamsiddeen – Customer outcomes will meet or exceed front end goals for applications, plans, and services.  We definitely will not achieve rehabilitation

outcome goals and will be fortunate if 85% of those goals are reached.  This is still a remarkable performance for staff given furlough days and budget



R. Weir – When are you planning to open MCTI-East?


J. Shamsiddeen - Hoping for January 2010 to open the first training program.


C. Kidder – Do we know placement rates for MCTI Plainwell?


J. Shamsiddeen - Yes, close to 90%.




Michigan Statewide Independent Living Council (MiSILC) – N. Bauer


There is nothing to add to the printed report that was e-mailed to the membership.  Excellent reviews were received for the Oakland/Macomb CIL.


Client Assistance Program (CAP) – J. Brown


2nd and 3rd quarter CAP reports were included in the meeting packet.  Information & referral calls were higher this year.  Case level services have remained

unchanged from last year.  M. Malloy - Seems like there has been an increase in calls you have been receiving from Detroit from the 2nd to 3rd quarter.

J. Brown – We have continued to see growth in the Detroit Mack Office, probably due to staffing changes.


Michigan Department of Education/Special Education – S. Diamond


S. Diamond was not on the call to provide a report.


Citizens Alliance to Uphold Special Education (CAUSE) – D. Hilvers


CAUSE did not receive funding to continue after September 30th.  Families will continue to be served through the newly named Parent and Training Information

Center (PTI). With the continued focus on early intervention and transition services to youth.  The Michigan Merit Curriculum has presented – conflicting

information and has separated kids into those working toward diploma and those working toward certificates of completion.


Question from N. Bauer – will trigonometry be a GED requirement as of 2011?


D. Hilvers – There will be more expectations for GEDs, but unsure about a response.


Question from S. Halacka – Do you think the Michigan Alliance for Families will be able to take on the role of Parent Training? D. Hilvers - Families are

vital to the support of students.


Michigan Commission for the Blind (MCB) – L . Jones


The Commission is moving forward with programs, with an emphasis on expansion of transition activities during the past year.  MCB is also working with the

MT-21 Project with MRS to evaluate transition services to youth through the Commission.  With the end of the fiscal year approaching, outcomes will be

down some this year, which reflects the current economy and fiscal situation.  45 transition students participated in the Michigan Youth Summer Program

to gain valuable work experience.  Several of the youth had already been working on acquiring soft skills.  MCB continues to work with the Business Enterprise

Program to introduce students to food service programs.  The Internship program via ARRA funds assists those at the end of the rehab process to gain work

experience in state departments by placing them at a work site for up to one year.  They would be like an employee of those offices/work sites.  MCB continues

with the adjustment Program which helps newly blind individuals learn to live independently.  The Commission is also working with CILs to increase services

and awareness to MCB consumers, developing pilot projects with Area on Aging agencies for technical training for youth and adults to bring training to

centers throughout the state, and working with Native Americans to expand information and vocational opportunities for more inclusion based on recommendations

from RSA.  Policy revisions for the small business program and college training are in progress.  The Library for the Blind and Physically Disabled will

be transferred to MCB and will be looking for ways to expand the program as of October 1st.


Council for Labor and Economic Growth – L . Zuellig


L. Zuellig was not on the call to provide a report.


Hannahville 121 Native American Community – C. Bergquist


Hannahville is entering the last year of a five year grant and will soon be applying for the next grant.  It’s a competitive process, with seventy-four

121 Projects and over 500 tribes across the country.  A Project Directors meeting, something similar to TACE centers, will be developed to help support

and provide vocational information for Native Americans.  A grant request has been made to MRS for the Hannahville tribe to receive for ARRA money, which

would expand options for jobs for native Americans and others in the area.


Michigan Rehabilitation Services – Hearings Manager – R. O’Connor


43 requests for hearings were processed with 2 carryovers from 2008.  29 at this time last year.  Four hearings, have been convened (1 is in progress and

1 adjourned temporarily to try to work out the issue).


S. Halacka – question about Hearings – can members see a breakdown of hearings info?  Were there areas of the state that were overrepresented?


R. O’Connor - Central and Northern Divisions had 15 hearings requests, Southeast Division had 20 and Western Division had 5.  M. Malloy added that these

numbers seem consistent with the past.  A small number have actually gone to hearings; this speaks to resolutions that have prevented hearings from taking



J. Shamsiddeen - Customer complaints are red flags for Order of Selection (OSS) and it seems they have increased recently.  When looking at OSS criteria,

this is where they look at data from the Hearings Manager to assess for red flags.


C. Cagle – Do you have any sense of where MRS is at with OSS?  Will there be a workgroup?  Looking at what current data tells us, the Red flag of a 10-12%

GF/GP cut faced by MRS would put MRS into OSS.


J. Shamsiddeen – currently, RSA has a different view of OSS.  Instead of more states encouraged to go into OSS, states need to apply to RSA for OSS to prove

they don’t have enough resources/staff to provide services.  5% or more GF/GP cuts would be a trigger if funds can’t be replaced by funding from other

sources.  MRS won’t chase this money to avoid the trigger.  Generic statewide match to serve customers in the state would be considered replacement money.

 MRS is trying to work with the IL network to use some of those funds for IL support services and swap some Social Security money to award to CILs for

IL services.


N. Bauer – Recently, the Executive Committee directed staff to send a letter to legislators about potential GF/GP cuts to MRS.  Was this letter sent?


M. Malloy - Yes, the letter was sent.


Public Comment


There were no contributions for Public Comment.


Next Business Meeting


Thursday October 8th will include lunch with MRS staff, presentations by MRS staff to the membership, and working dinners for three committees.  The business

meeting will take place on Friday October 9th from 9AM – 3:30PM.


There was no other business to discuss.


      A motion was passed to adjourn the meeting at 2:54pm


NEXT BUSINESS MEETING: Friday, October 9th, 2009


9AM – 3:30PM


Radisson Hotel, Lansing Michigan

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